On August 3, President Rodrigo Duterte has signed a law amending the Batasan Pambansa 702 to prohibit demand of deposits or advance payments for the confinement or treatment of patients in hospitals and medical cases.
Under Republic Act (RA) 10932, stiffer penalties will be imposed to any hospitals and medical clinics that will refuse to administer appropriate initial medical treatment and support in emergency serious cases.
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For more information, kindly read SunStar's report below.
Section 1 of RA 10932 provides that it is unlawful for any personnel of a hospital or medical clinic to "request, solicit, demand or accept any deposit or any other form of advance payment as a prerequisite for administering basic emergency care to any patient."
In the case of "inadequacy" of medical capabilities of the hospital or medical clinic, the law allows the attending physician may transfer the patient to a facility providing appropriate care, given that the patient gets necessary emergency treatment and support.
If there is no ambulance available for use for the emergency transfer of the patient, the law mandates local government unit where the hospital or medical clinic is located to allow the free use of its emergency vehicle.
Any personnel of a hospital or medical clinic who will violate the provisions of the law will face an imprisonment of not less than six months and one day but not more than two years and four months.
Violators will also face a fine of not less than P100,000 but not more than P300,000. If such violation was committed pursuant to an established policy of the hospital or clinic or upon the instruction of its management, the director or officer of such hospital or clinic responsible will suffer imprisonment of four to six years, or a fine of not less than P500,000 but not more than P1 million.
If violations are repeated three times, the DOH is designated to revoke the health facility's license to operate.